Considering the history of the formation of the business process management discipline and its concept definitions, and by looking at organisations as social systems, it can be demonstrated that conventional business process management practices can be associated with the functionalist social paradigm and therefore are only applicable in unitary problem contexts. Participants in unitary problem contexts have similar values, beliefs and interests, share common goals and objectives and are all involved in decision-making about how to achieve the common goals and objectives. It can be argued that this problem context covers only a very small percentage of the problems that an organisation is concerned with and that this inherent paradigmatic limitation in the current definitions of business process management concepts causes the outcomes of the BPM practices based on them to be unrealistic, incomplete and even at points misleading. To address this paradigmatic limitation this paper proposes new definitions for BPM’s main concepts to reduce its tight coupling with the unitary problem context and make it more applicable in pluralist and coercive problem contexts and therefore closer in its outcomes to the reality of the organisation.
Green, S., Mavaddat, M., & Sa, J. (2014, June). Addressing the paradigmatic limitation of conventional business process management concepts by proposing new definitions. Paper presented at 15th International Conference, BPMDS 2014, Held at CAiSE 2104